Formerly known as the “Revved up for Kids” car show, the Edelbrock car show has grown into one of the premiere Southern California spring/early summer shows. From a single cause in the early days, the 2015 event is now a part of the Edelbrock Family Foundation that supports several great causes including the Hot Rodders of Tomorrow Engine Challenge.
The show has always been a multiple day event and this year was no different with Friday, the first day of May, being tour day. The company opens its corporate doors to the public with guided tours of the corporate headquarters and manufacturing facilities in Torrance, California. The tours, which always fill up to capacity, allow the public to see how things work at the 77-year-old performance products company. From the research and development departments to the finished products and shipping, these tours give enthusiasts a chance to see what goes on behind the scenes.
This year was no different than the previous years as the tours filled up to capacity early on. Starting at 10:00 in the morning running until 2:00 in the afternoon, nine groups of 30 people in each guided tour made their way through the facilities. Most enthusiasts appeared to enjoy the engine and chassis dyno department and the “toy barn” where the test vehicles are allowed to play. These tours should be on every performance enthusiast’s bucket list.
Car Show Time
The next day, Saturday, May 2nd, is when things really kicked into gear. Volunteers, mostly from the Edelbrock company, arrived at “Vic’s Garage” before the sun came up to start prepping for the onslaught of show cars that were migrating to Torrance. For this one day every year, always during the first week in May, the surrounding areas around the Edelbrock building are lined with cars of every make and model. Each year the car show consumes more room than the year before, seemingly setting records with numbers of cars and visitors. The atmosphere is so festive that the local businesses around the Edelbrock building assist with the car show, becoming a part of the event.
Live entertainment has always been one of the major highlights of the car show with local radio stations broadcasting live from the event. Not wanting to be outdone, the local TV stations show up with their “action reporter” crews to film footage from the event. Countless magazines show up to record the event with photographs and great articles documenting a day of hot rods, great food and camaraderie with other automotive enthusiasts.
Birds of a Feather
Staging the cars has become a herculean effort for the car show organizers as hundreds of vehicles show up, from the spectator’s cars to the show cars and in many cases, tow vehicles and trailers. The Edelbrock team tries to put similar vehicles in the same area for fans that have specific interests. Mopars with Mopars, early Fords with early Chevys, and customs with customs – in an attempt to keep birds of a feather together – but you never quite know what to expect when you turn the corner to the next street.
The center of the Edelbrock car show universe is Vic’s garage where many of the special test cars from over the years have ended up. Each has a special story, from Vic Edelbrock, Jr.’s, first car to the Smokey Yunick prepared Trans Am Camaro.
Lining the walls are photos of the pioneers of auto performance. From Ed Pink to Louie Senter and Vic Edelbrock, Sr., the greats are represented. There are also display spots around the building for the revolutionary performance products that Edelbrock either developed or had a hand in manufacturing. Truly revolutionary products like the dual and triple carburetor slingshot flathead Ford intakes that started it all for the Edelbrock company.
The Hot Rodders of Tomorrow Engine Challenge
As enthusiasts wander around the streets looking at the show cars, a group of young engine builders compete in an event that has become a staple at many of the largest car shows. The Hot Rodders of Tomorrow Engine Challenge welcomes high school teams into a judged competition where a few local high school vocational shop teams compete head-to-head. They race against the clock to tear down a small-block Chevy engine and rebuild it to running condition, including torquing the rotating assembly correctly. Judging is done when the torque is checked on all bolts to make sure it’s built correctly.
Not far from the Hot Rodders of Tomorrow, several other aftermarket automotive vendors are staged around the food vendors. There is definitely something for everyone to see, including midget race cars, face-painting clowns, specialty cars and celebrities. This is positively an event that belongs on the calendar of every car lover who is in the Southern California area in May each year. If you are lucky enough, like hundreds of fans at the car show, you can walk away with a custom-autographed Edelbrock hat from Vic Edelbrock, Jr., himself. Below is our gallery from the show, and this gives you a full year to plan for the next show; you’ll definitely get your fill of adrenaline-based musclecars.